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NYL_WNBA_FAN



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PostPosted: 07/29/20 5:30 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

root_thing wrote:
It should also be pointed out that once Nurse went down, the Liberty only had two real guards -- Ionescu and Clarendon. That put a lot of pressure on both players even though NY is supposedly playing positionless basketball. The same will be true on Wednesday if Jones is still unavailable. People forget that Willoughby and Walker were PFs in college this season. If fact, Willoughby even played some center. It's no big deal for them to move to SF, but SG is a bigger transition. The one person who did play some guard this year was Odom. However, if NY starts Odom, Ionescu, and Clarendon together, then they'll need Willoughby or Walker to give them some minutes off the bench at SG. Another option is to have Holmes help out with the ball-handling from a forward position -- especially when either Ionescu or Clarendon is resting. I think it was Ben Dull who said Holmes should aspire to be Alyssa Thomas. Now is a good time to start trying. Smile


Agreed totally. Body type is also a factor. Willoughby does have some guard-like skills. Decent vision. Decent handle. But her body type is big and strong without great agility. Much more like a 3/4 spot player than a 2. Walker isn’t as built as Willoughby, but she also doesn’t have the loose body type that most guards have.

And when you have an offense predicated on driving and kicking out to shooters who get freed up, it’s hard to do it with these kinds of players having to play guard. Never mind that they’re also rookies learning a new system and new position in a pro league.

Hopefully Dallas is as bad defensively as they were Sunday. If NY cannot break 80 points against this team it’s a sign they are in big trouble until when/if Nurse returns. My gut feeling is they’re in big trouble honestly. Hopefully I’m wrong.



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Richyyy



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PostPosted: 07/29/20 6:50 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Bentley is still there, apparently: https://twitter.com/BrendonKleen14/status/1288609504326688768?s=20



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toad455



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PostPosted: 07/29/20 8:16 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Richyyy wrote:
Bentley is still there, apparently: https://twitter.com/BrendonKleen14/status/1288609504326688768?s=20


If she is indeed injured, there's no point in any team signing her. McCall will likely get picked up.



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NYL_WNBA_FAN



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PostPosted: 07/29/20 9:05 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

This brings back memories of the last two years. Willoughby sure looked like a rookie tonight.



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Bob Lamm



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PostPosted: 07/29/20 9:27 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

NYL_WNBA_FAN wrote:
This brings back memories of the last two years.


I feel exactly the opposite, even with a poor team performance tonight. Sabrina Ionescu, in only her second WNBA game, showed she is and will be a star. 33 points, seven rebounds, seven assists. Yes, it was a bad showing by a team with SEVEN rookies out of 11 on a night when our second-best player was recovering from an injury and wasn't herself. On a night when perhaps our second-best rookie probably wasn't in game shape and only played for two minutes.

I don't recall seeing anything I was excited about in Katie Smith's two seasons. Our one star was becoming a fading star. I say now: even if six of our seven rookies turn out to be complete busts--and it's WAY too early to decide that--we have a huge star on our team at the very beginning of her WNBA career. I'm excited. And if the Liberty finish 4-18 this season, I can live with that.



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NYL_WNBA_FAN



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PostPosted: 07/29/20 9:58 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Bob Lamm wrote:
NYL_WNBA_FAN wrote:
This brings back memories of the last two years.


I feel exactly the opposite, even with a poor team performance tonight. Sabrina Ionescu, in only her second WNBA game, showed she is and will be a star. 33 points, seven rebounds, seven assists. Yes, it was a bad showing by a team with SEVEN rookies out of 11 on a night when our second-best player was recovering from an injury and wasn't herself. On a night when perhaps our second-best rookie probably wasn't in game shape and only played for two minutes.

I don't recall seeing anything I was excited about in Katie Smith's two seasons. Our one star was becoming a fading star. I say now: even if six of our seven rookies turn out to be complete busts--and it's WAY too early to decide that--we have a huge star on our team at the very beginning of her WNBA career. I'm excited. And if the Liberty finish 4-18 this season, I can live with that.


Yeah. I kinda misspoke out of mild frustration. Sabrina is obviously one of a kind. And the other rookies have potential which is a plus.

I’m a little disappointed from an execution/structure standpoint. In spite of the youth. Dallas is young too and no more talented than NY in my opinion. Hopefully long term this type of offense works out for the best. But in a league where even the young teams are dropping 90 and 100 regularly the Libs have structural issues by comparison. And this is compared to other fairly equally inexperienced teams. It took them about six minutes just to get a clean look. Spacing is an issue too. Let’s see how soon it gets fixed but in general I’m not terribly impressed from a coaching standpoint so far. Yes it’s early but other young teams appear structured where NY looks aimless.

This was touted as the best developmental staff in the WNBA. It’s certainly early of course. But I’m not seeing stuff that screams “best”. At least not in comparison to other teams in a similar situation.



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PostPosted: 07/30/20 12:03 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

NYL_WNBA_FAN wrote:
Yeah. I kinda misspoke out of mild frustration. Sabrina is obviously one of a kind. And the other rookies have potential which is a plus.

I’m a little disappointed from an execution/structure standpoint. In spite of the youth. Dallas is young too and no more talented than NY in my opinion. Hopefully long term this type of offense works out for the best. But in a league where even the young teams are dropping 90 and 100 regularly the Libs have structural issues by comparison. And this is compared to other fairly equally inexperienced teams. It took them about six minutes just to get a clean look. Spacing is an issue too. Let’s see how soon it gets fixed but in general I’m not terribly impressed from a coaching standpoint so far. Yes it’s early but other young teams appear structured where NY looks aimless.

This was touted as the best developmental staff in the WNBA. It’s certainly early of course. But I’m not seeing stuff that screams “best”. At least not in comparison to other teams in a similar situation.


I agree that in terms of structural issues, spacing, etc., the team hasn't looked good. But, while I haven't carefully studied the rosters of other teams, it's hard for me to imagine that there are indeed "other fairly equally inexperienced teams." Seven rookies out of 11 roster players in a season with less than usual preparation time before games that count. One rookie who missed an important chunk of that prep time. Only two veterans who played together for the Liberty in 2019.

As for "the best developmental staff in the WNBA," perhaps by the middle of the 2020 season they'll have proven that. At the moment, we've got a head coach who's never had that job before and a staff who haven't all worked together before. I always feel--I wrote this about Asia Durr during preseason last year--that it's important to be patient with rookies. I intend to be just as patient with Walt Hopkins and the staff.

I'm not going to say that you or anyone shouldn't be upset after seeing our team get beaten so easily by Dallas. I'll just say, for myself, that I'm now even more excited about Sabrina than before. I'm hoping that after 20 more games we'll have a better feeling about at least a couple of the other rookies and a better feeling about our coaching staff.



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root_thing



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PostPosted: 07/30/20 12:59 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Is there such thing as a motionless offense or a read and don't react offense? Laughing That's what we had tonight. I don't know if that's the players' fault or the coaches, but for once Carolyn Peck was right. The offense was very static. Most of what Sabrina got was from individual effort as were most of the points by other people. There was no functioning offensive system.

NY lost control of the game during the 2nd Quarter when they went small and Dallas went big. The Wings could take advantage inside, but NY had no success countering with speed. At some point, Hopkins may want to actually match-up defensively instead of just pretending that his positionless, size-impervious philosophy always works. He did make more use of Holmes later and it seemed to help. He may want to do that earlier next time.

Looking at team stats, what the Liberty do well right now is rebound (2nd rpg, 4th pct) and avoid fouls (1st). They're bottom 4 in everything else, usually bottom 2. The obvious thing they need to clean-up first is turnovers. They're last at 20 ppg. A lot of those turnovers are unforced -- usually the result of aggressive, low percentage passes. That's one area where Sabrina in particular needs to dial back.



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NYL_WNBA_FAN



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PostPosted: 07/30/20 9:15 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

@Bob My reference to comparing other teams is with Dallas their average age is less than NY. While they do have a returning coach, like NY they have two returning starters and only Allisha Gray is a significant returnee. The team is just as young and just as new. The Liberty starting lineup even looked lost much of the time. This is with 4 vets + Sabrina. Atlanta has one returning starter, a few returning bench players and the rest of the team is new. Like NY they have a rookie PG. They dropped 100 points on the same team we struggled to score against.

Now I’ll freely admit that I think the organization is thinking bigger picture. Meaning that the offense will probably be harder to learn but once they do, they’ll have their identity and foundation. And I’m fully open to that. However, certain basic things are not happening so far. Certain things don’t make sense and I’m wondering where the adjustments are. Like why is Kiah getting the ball in a medium post position and kicking it back out without making an offensive move vs. 1-on-1 coverage? It’s happened multiple times in two games. Why can’t they even execute a dribble hand-off without sweating a turnover? I get being patient. But I also think that for the positive talk they’ve given they should be a little ahead of where they are now.

@Root Once they went small and to predominantly the bench players, it set them back in a way where they couldn’t recover. Even when the starters returned, defensively they were exposed badly.



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root_thing



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PostPosted: 07/30/20 9:45 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Part of the problem is that practice can be deceptively easy. Teams run drills which means defensive resistance is either air or a coach barely offering any challenge. When players actually face-off against teammates, it's often 3x3 or 4x4 because they want to have people available for substitution and to continue practice. That provides unrealistic open space for maneuvering that you don't have playing 5x5. It's easier to pass and easier to drive because you face fewer help defenders. Then in a real game, those hand-offs and passes that were so easy in practice suddenly become tougher. In particular, that seemed to be Dallas' strategy yesterday. They were aggressively challenging the hand-offs and in general playing vigorous ball-denial. Not having male practice players is probably hampering Hopkins as he tries to teach and test his concepts.



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PostPosted: 07/30/20 9:50 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

root_thing wrote:
Part of the problem is that practice can be deceptively easy.


Especially when you’re practicing among the league’s worst team. 😂



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NYL_WNBA_FAN



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PostPosted: 07/30/20 9:52 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Seriously though agreed. But it kinda boggles the mind that if there’s ball denial you don’t see more back cuts or flare cuts on the back side. There’s easy ways to beat it yet it feels like a root canal watching it be executed. The kind where you ask for more medicine to numb the pain and the dentist gives it to you after 15 minutes of agony.



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root_thing



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PostPosted: 07/30/20 9:58 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

NYL_WNBA_FAN wrote:
root_thing wrote:
Part of the problem is that practice can be deceptively easy.


Especially when you’re practicing among the league’s worst team. 😂


I don't think that's the biggest problem. Unless you just think the team has no talent, which I don't. The problem is execution. There was just a lot of standing around and players looked hesitant. To me, that's because they suddenly found themselves in unfamiliar territory. Stuff that worked in practice wasn't working in the game so they froze. The players that fared the best were the ones able to create for themselves. The team concept wasn't working at all.



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PostPosted: 07/30/20 10:11 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Post Game Press Conference: Hopkins, Ionescu, Zahui B.

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/0YKcsFFgVzo" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture" allowfullscreen></iframe>



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PostPosted: 07/30/20 10:15 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Actually, I think New York is without much talent ...

*Ionescu and Nurse are clearly WNBA-level players

*Clarendon has played 200 games in the league and in that time, has shown she is a solid backup who's a little overexposed as a starter.

*Stokes and Zahui B are both borderline at best, suited for 10 minutes off the bench for a good team.

*The other rookies are all unproven and though a couple may turn out to be WNBA-starter level, it's equally likely, if not more likely, that none will.

This is a bad team.



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toad455



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PostPosted: 07/30/20 10:32 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

We just have too many rookies. Instead of signing Holmes, we should have signed someone like Tamera Young or Shavonte Zellous.



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PostPosted: 07/30/20 10:48 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

toad455 wrote:
We just have too many rookies. Instead of signing Holmes, we should have signed someone like Tamera Young or Shavonte Zellous.


New York has seven rookies and (with Durr not there) no players with only one year of WNBA experience. Plus a head coach who's a rookie in that job. Dallas has three rookies, four players with only one year of experience, and an incredibly experienced head coach. For me, there's no meaningful comparison in those situations, even if the average age of Dallas players is younger than the average age of Liberty players. Having even one year of WNBA experience is profoundly different from being a rookie. And, add this, being a rookie in a season in which prep time before Game One and practice time between games has been seriously limited.

I agree that signing a seventh rookie was a dubious move.



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NYL_WNBA_FAN



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PostPosted: 07/30/20 11:03 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

root_thing wrote:
NYL_WNBA_FAN wrote:
root_thing wrote:
Part of the problem is that practice can be deceptively easy.


Especially when you’re practicing among the league’s worst team. 😂


I don't think that's the biggest problem. Unless you just think the team has no talent, which I don't. The problem is execution. There was just a lot of standing around and players looked hesitant. To me, that's because they suddenly found themselves in unfamiliar territory. Stuff that worked in practice wasn't working in the game so they froze. The players that fared the best were the ones able to create for themselves. The team concept wasn't working at all.


I was half kidding with the remark. I agree. Plus it’s a difficult offense to learn. Talent-wise there’s questions but to Clay’s point I don’t think this team is 13 points worse than Dallas.



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PostPosted: 07/30/20 11:06 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

On both sides of the floor, the Wings seemed quicker than the Liberty. Whether that’s natural athleticism or hesitation/overthinking by New York players, I’m not totally sure.
But Dallas defense last night is how I envisioned New York playing D when Walt spoke preseason.

Also, Dallas is only younger by decimal points. And they are coached by an experienced, championship winning and caliber coach who maybe knows a thing or two about in game adjustments. 3 rookies compared to 7. Our bench consists of all rookies- 3 late first rounders and 3 second rounders.

Kia Nurse averaged 13ppg last season, was an All Star. She scored 2, that’s essentially the difference in the scoreline. Not saying it’s as simple as Kia making shots, just pointing out that if she gets back to that level, we are at least in the game- same with Seattle and the 16 point loss, whom Minnesota lost to by 24.

PS happy birthday to the youngest head coach in the league, Walt Hopkins Jr!


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PostPosted: 07/30/20 11:17 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Also, as much as I hate to see my teams struggle and lose (Sacramento Kings fan here, my life for the past 14 years), I’m trying to keep in mind with this super inexperienced player/staff team that the coaches/GM ideas of a successful season is very different from the players ideas and from fans ideas.

Walt and Kolb spoke very much about a process, and growth for this year. I’m sure they want to win just as bad, but I think they will be satisfied if the team starts learning the system better as the season progresses, and both individually and collaboratively players have growth.

Seeing players just stand around on offense wasn’t fun to watch last night, but I know the concept is there because for part of the Seattle game we had beautiful passing and cutting and general movement.


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PostPosted: 07/30/20 11:21 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

ClayK wrote:
Actually, I think New York is without much talent ...

*Ionescu and Nurse are clearly WNBA-level players

*Clarendon has played 200 games in the league and in that time, has shown she is a solid backup who's a little overexposed as a starter.

*Stokes and Zahui B are both borderline at best, suited for 10 minutes off the bench for a good team.

*The other rookies are all unproven and though a couple may turn out to be WNBA-starter level, it's equally likely, if not more likely, that none will.

This is a bad team.


You've admitted in the past that you don't watch much pro or college basketball. You don't know most of these players, and where you're familiar with them it's basically from high school. Consequently, your opinions are often based on assumptions of arrested development. I've watched all these players in college, and after they were drafted I made a point of watching additional archived games. I've also studied their statistics. I feel optimistic that players other than Sabrina will have successful careers in the league. I can't say how many or what level of success, but I'm sure we won't have six busts.

Yes, it's a bad team now. But as a coach, how would you like to be judged after two games with a team that has just two returning players and seven rookies? This is a rebuilding process. No one ever looks good at the beginning. How bad was Minnesota for several years until they finally popped? They suddenly went from 13 wins in 2010 to 27 wins in 2011. From 2002 to 2003, Detroit jumped from last to first -- 9 wins to 25 wins. We never know how these things will turn out. Is it more likely that a rebuilding team will fail rather than succeed? Yes, history shows it's true in every sport, and just the nature of competition means only a few will succeed. But how does any of that add to the conversation?



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PostPosted: 07/30/20 11:27 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Based on the press conference, Hopkins felt the Wings were more aggressive and physical. They just wanted it more. So let's see what the Liberty learn from that. We've seen some big turnarounds already after two games. Indiana went from scoring 76 points in their first game to 106 in the second. Atlanta did the opposite, dropping from 105 points to 70. You just get the feeling this season is going to be a wild ride.



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PostPosted: 07/30/20 12:04 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

root_thing wrote:
ClayK wrote:
Actually, I think New York is without much talent ...

*Ionescu and Nurse are clearly WNBA-level players

*Clarendon has played 200 games in the league and in that time, has shown she is a solid backup who's a little overexposed as a starter.

*Stokes and Zahui B are both borderline at best, suited for 10 minutes off the bench for a good team.

*The other rookies are all unproven and though a couple may turn out to be WNBA-starter level, it's equally likely, if not more likely, that none will.

This is a bad team.


You've admitted in the past that you don't watch much pro or college basketball. You don't know most of these players, and where you're familiar with them it's basically from high school. Consequently, your opinions are often based on assumptions of arrested development. I've watched all these players in college, and after they were drafted I made a point of watching additional archived games. I've also studied their statistics. I feel optimistic that players other than Sabrina will have successful careers in the league. I can't say how many or what level of success, but I'm sure we won't have six busts.

Yes, it's a bad team now. But as a coach, how would you like to be judged after two games with a team that has just two returning players and seven rookies? This is a rebuilding process. No one ever looks good at the beginning. How bad was Minnesota for several years until they finally popped? They suddenly went from 13 wins in 2010 to 27 wins in 2011. From 2002 to 2003, Detroit jumped from last to first -- 9 wins to 25 wins. We never know how these things will turn out. Is it more likely that a rebuilding team will fail rather than succeed? Yes, history shows it's true in every sport, and just the nature of competition means only a few will succeed. But how does any of that add to the conversation?


A minor correction: I actually watch quite a bit of the WNBA. College definitely less so, but a fair amount of Pac-12 (a game a week all told, I'd say).

You definitely watch more of them in college, no question. It could be that several of these rookies exceed what is usual for their spot in the draft process, and you would certainly know better than I. It's also possible they will produce, as a group, at about the level history would suggest.

I'm not judging the coach, or the process, or anything except the caliber of players on the roster right now. I hope Hopkins succeeds, and I definitely hope the Liberty succeed. But I think expecting this roster to win many games is just going to lead to disappointment.



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PostPosted: 07/30/20 12:05 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

ATL dropped 105 pts on Dallas, which should have given you more hope for a good game than this.

I guess Dallas is a great team to play if you want to showcase your prominent rookie. When does Indiana play Dallas?



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PostPosted: 07/30/20 12:18 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Ionescu's 33 points is a season-high for a player - though it's still quite early, let's see how long it takes for anyone else to eclipse that (or maybe she will herself).

And through the first two games, of which every team has played, Ionescu has 13 total rebounds. Idea Fun Fact! Idea She currently has more rebounds than each of these starting post players: Stevens, Swords, Dantas, E. Williams, Meesseman, B. Jones, Ogwumike, Howard, Turner.



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